Tuesday, February 28, 2012


During the winter holidays, I had the opportunity to watch Suessical at The Young People's Theatre during my camp job. I absolutely loved it! Watching people dance, act, and sing while wearing colourful, creative costumes performed on a well designed set actually makes me teary eyed to see such talent. I wish I was that dramatically talented but I always have my visual arts to turn to. I hope I can get my hands on the CD one day. In the meantime, here's one of the songs I loved...all about the imagination.

I came upon this super cute craft relating to Dr. Suess and his truffula trees from The Lorax. Click on picture to link to the blog.

Question: What's your favourite Dr. Suess book or quote?

Mine has always been:

"Be who you are and say what you feel, because those who mind don't matter and those who matter don't mind." :)

Saturday, February 25, 2012

Catherine Rayner

I need to blog even if it's a random post about my week (although the reason I started this blog was to keep it more streamlined)...

Some more children's books I came across this week where the drawings are so interesting...

 Sylvia and Bird by Catherine Rayner
I love the layering of colours painted on the dragon creating an interesting texture and is coupled by the simplicity of the backgrounds. The story is also a sweet story with a theme about friends.

  Images are from Catherine Rayner's website.

Another book with her illustrations is Posy. I very much enjoyed the illustrations but I do like the story of Sylvia and Bird better.

I'll post more about the other two books I found later on :)

Monday, February 20, 2012

mommy moments + birthday girl at the museum

Ever since becoming a mom, I've been confused about what I really want to do as a career. I never imagined myself to be a stay at home mom but after experiencing motherhood for 2 years, I really don't have the desire to find full time work. That is why wanting to find a real teaching job is looking bleak too because pre-teacher's college, I didn't mind all the work put into planning and then getting to see my ideas come to life. These days I think I prefer a job where I can leave work at work. Sigh. So much confusion of what I really want to do...

On another note, my daughter just turned 2 on Saturday! It's truly amazing thinking of how much she's grown from the moment I met her eyes for the first time. She's a little person with a big personality compared to the days when she just lay there, ate, sleep, looked around, ate, sleep, looked around. Her language acquisition is growing so quickly and there are always the funny moments when she would repeat everything you say. And not to mention her Chinglish of adding "ing" or "ed" to the Chinese verb characters. She truly is amazing and I'm going to try to enjoy every moment of it.

We celebrated her birthday twice-once with her grandparents in London and the other back home with my family. We had a really great time at the Children's Museum in London (ON). It's not really like a museum but more of themed interactive play areas and since children learn best through playing, I find this to be a more appealing place for younger children in comparison to the ROM where there are fewer interactive areas for children. Anyway, a few pictures of the place sourced from its website.

 An Arctic exhibit where children can kayak, mush huskies, go fishing, build their own Inukshuk, and explore the ways of living in the Arctic. I really liked this exhibit as it was new, modern, and had lots of opportunity for hands on learning.

 A little dinosaur exhibit with opportunity to dig for dinosaur bones, make dinosaur rubbings, dress up as a dinosaur, and walk through a cave. I found this exhibit a little outdated but it was a good welcomer as the guests first enter the museum.

 "Science in Your World" exhibit where children can dig up their own vegetables (made from felt-very cute), cook up a storm in the kitchen, sort items as recyclables, and explore the nature and science of the backyard. I quite liked this exhibit except some of the toys needs a little refreshing and also the missing recyclables for sorting.

A neighbourhood where children can play the roles of real life places and professions such as a post office, grocery store, gym, fast food restaurant (McDonald's...err). I love the idea and the plasma car was a blast. Too bad the toys there really needed lots of organizing and probably replaced with some new ones.

Overall, I really did have great time. I was only critiquing out of the mom/teacher side of me...please forgive me if it sounded like complaining.

Saturday, February 11, 2012

toddler activity-dress up person

I miss blogging. Let's do one more post. I finally went back to the Early Years Centre this week because for once, my daughter woke up early enough to get ready to get there by 9:30 and we didn't have anything we HAD to do that day.

It was so nice to be back. My little girl definitely needs to get more time to socialize with little ones her age. She was rather shy and spent a lot of time observing other little boys and girls her age. She tried a range of activities but never really settled down to play one for a while. During circle time, she did not participate with all the actions but she did clap after each song. The one song she did remember and did the actions for was.
There was a crocodile (chop hand thing)
And orangutan (monkey action)

A snaky snake (wiggling arm)
An Eagle flying (fly)
A Bunny (bunny ears)
A Beaver (beaver teeth)
A crazy elephant (elephant trunk)
Na na na nan na na na

Lastly, we had a little craft and it was nice when there were choices for the children eg. Which one would you like? different coloured crayon to write name, showing the boy or girl, different coloured shirts and pants. Also there was a variety of decorations for the children to glue and paste. I was rather proud to see my daughter glue everything on her own with little assistance. The teacher pointed out something important to those parents who seemed to be doing the craft for the children. Something along the lines of..."We don't care what you can make. We care about what the children can make. We care about letting the children develop their fine motor skills."

revisiting my arting passion

A few days ago, I found out about a place called, Paintlounge.

After seeing their website, I was too attracted to justify not going (after all, there is barely enough time for a shower as a mom, let alone paint). It's social painting with a little cafe on the side (a similar idea my husband and I talked about years ago). I'm so glad I went because I realized how much I missed painting and making art in general. I also came up with a little painting to give to my daughter. So long to those university days of depressing, social issue paintings and art. Hello to my new mommy series of happy, cutesy paintings. I'm hoping to eventually set up my own home art studio...we'll see.

Sorry for the poor picture. The quote says "Fantasy is a necessary ingredient in living, it's a way of looking at life through the wrong end of a telescope." by Dr. Suess. I showed this to my daughter and I told her it's about imagination. Imagination is when you pretend to be different things like a princess, a tiger, and more. Also, you can see wonderful things when you use it. After, she pointed to the Toopy and Binoo Imagination song from the broadway CD and said "same same." She wanted me to play the song and hold her as we danced and while I explained the painting to her. Yesterday, whenever I mentioned imagination,  she wanted me to play the song and we used our imagination with fabrics...pretending it's snowpants, water for swimming, wings of a bird, a scarf, clothes to hang up to dry. It's amazing how much an almost 2 yr knows and does. :)

Speaking of arting and kids, I came upon a neat installation with the "I wish I came up with it" feeling.

A blank room.
Thousands of stickers.
Two weeks.

The Obliteration Room by Yayoi Kusama. You can read about it here.

Maybe I should use that idea for my little girl :D

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

children's illustrations

I went to the library today and picked up a couple of interesting children's books with fabulous illustrations. One that really stood out to me was Wave by Suzy Lee.

The story is told through the pictures which are well worth more than a thousand words. I love the paint and drawing technique and the story of a little girl at the beach which reminds me of my little one during last summer's beach days. I hope to incorporate some of this inspiration into my future paintings.

Another two books worth noting:

                                                     Box of Tricks by Katie Cleminson

                                                           Art by Patrick McDonnell